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Honesty is the best policy #life

I’m not a Guardian-style writer, I don’t use long words to impress my editor. I am the editor! I try to appeal to as many people as I can and write in what I think is an easy to read style. It has come to my attention that I have been mentioned on another blog by one, Julian Saunders who refers to himself as ‘The Sandwell Skidder’. He is a troll of the first order. He uses name calling and innuendo to try to damage the reputations of honest people. He has used innuendo to try to make out I was involved in seedy practices when I helped with the Wednesbury Business Improvement District initiative. As always, I was an unpaid volunteer doing social media management, graphic design and photography. I did speak to some traders and tried to explain the BID initiative as honestly as I could. Honesty is the best policy.

Honesty is the best policy

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10 things you didn’t know about Sandwell

OK, I’m not a great fan of Sandwell, the name now symbolizes centralisation because it was chosen for the name of the Metropolitan borough that absorbed the 6 towns. It appears that ‘Sandwell’ took its name from ‘Sancta Fons’ or The Holy Well about a mile S.E. of the church, and situated in a beautiful and secluded valley, well suited to the religious purposes of a hermitage or priory. “William, sone of Guy de Ophene, in the latter end of the reign of King Henry the Second, founded a Benedictine priory in the hermitage of West Bromwich near the well called ‘Sandwell,’ and endowed it with several lands lying about the same.”

This is Sandwell College, it sort of symbolizes the modern era to me.

Sandwell College by Phil Grayston

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Oil price and the global economy

Oil price

Oil underpins the global economy and so a low oil price should be good for the global economy. However, the global economy is out of balance and being manipulated. The global economy should be a free market but it is no such thing. It is a network of trade deals, monopolies and cartels. (more…)


political risk #investments

Political risk

There is always some political risk when it comes to investing. The prehistoric tendency for one tribe to go to war with another still exists. We might have developed supercomputers and space travel but many people still have Neanderthal ideas. It makes it difficult for those of us who want a world of entertainment, peace and security. (more…)


Can photo-blogging improve a community?

I went to a creative meeting last week and on the way home noticed there were no cars parked outside the Black Horse and took the opportunity to photograph it at night. Lots of pubs have closed down in the Black Country but this one is doing well because it’s run well. (more…)


Is the root of our problems, education?

If I go to a store to buy a computer, the choice of operating systems is very limited. Windows from Microsoft has a virtual monopoly or I could go for a the more expensive computer from Apple. The third option would be an Android PC. All these operating systems come from America. (more…)


Easy money? #investments

The other day I read that the majority of members of parliament are now landlords and have their money invested in the London property market. It only needs the government to fund a London building programme to burst that bubble. No wonder they’re all scared of Corbyn getting into number 10! (more…)


The spirit of Christmas? #ramble

CHRISTMAS LIGHTS (71) (Copy)

I went out into Wednesbury, the town I live in and photographed the ‘Christmas’ lights last night. This is the town ‘square’, the lights are a little hard to spot. They are better than last year too, but not good enough. (more…)


The power of images #photography

black-country-church

This picture of the two churches overlooking where I live will be recognised by people living in the town. It’s an iconic image even at night and one that can be seen miles away. When we see the churches we know we’re home. (more…)


Market abuse #investments

Most investors suspect market abuse, but insider trading and the passing of insider information is hard to prove. Share prices often rise suddenly and the reason emerges sometime later. Even the delay in making market movements public which are usually 15 minutes is suspicious. (more…)


M and A #investments

Mergers and acquisitions can send stock prices soaring higher and acquisitions are more likely when prices are low; mergers too are more likely when times are tough. The FTSE 100 dropped from a high of over 7,000 to below 6,000 and so many companies have been looking at M & A. (more…)


Building value #life

DIALECT WEEKEND (285)

Pay it forward

Respond to a person’s kindness to oneself by being kind to someone else.

I’m not too keen on these modern American terms, but I like this one because I don’t have an alternative.  It’s an idea that works in a community or in a society. Someone helps you out and you pass it on to someone else. It’s bound to help make life easier and foster community cohesion. (more…)


Risk and return #investments

The FTSE 100 is up this morning after some positive news from the US, but investors are still nervous. Private investors expect a real terms return on their investment that reflects the risk they are taking.  (more…)


Short term and long term #investments

We have to think both short term and long term when we invest. While we want to see a return on our investments on paper because that gives us a virtual return and so adds to our financial security. We also want to see real returns when we sell or when we collect dividends. (more…)


Posh panic #investments

Posh boys panic

At one time all the traders in the City of London had East end accents. Now they are all Oxbridge educated and talk posh, they also panic when sentiment goes against the market.  They don’t appreciate that they are the sentiment. So the Shanghai composite took a dive on Monday and we saw posh boy panic in London. (more…)


Diverse investments

The good news this week was that RSA Insurance may be taken over by Zurich. That sent the price up to 518, but it has dropped back to 516. (more…)


Crisis bargain hunting #investments

Crisis bargain hunting

It looks like the Greece crisis is over, at least for now, but prices haven’t fully recovered. The FTSE 100 index is still way down off it’s high of earlier this year. At the time of writing, it’s on 6,791.51. Will it go back up past 7000? (more…)


SWOT analysis #investments

SWOT analysis

When we are looking to invest, we can do a SWOT analysis on the company and look at Strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats. One threat that always seems to be there and is hard to predict is political uncertainty. (more…)


A democratic stock market

stock market

Democratic stock market

I’m old enough to remember the sell off, of nationalised industries in the UK. The gas industry, water, telephones and electricity were all sold off at bargain prices. Even the TSB was sold and the government didn’t even own that. It could have been a good thing, but they were simply sold off to the middle classes.  Most people lost out and have since suffered with high bills from those industries. A truly democratic stock market would give access to all. (more…)


Solo Oil and Horse Hill #investments

Solo Oil post

Solo Oil suspended

Solo Oil provided us with a bit of excitement this week when their shares were suspended on the London Stock Exchange pending an announcement. I think some private investors were checking out Ferraris on Auto Trader! (more…)


Market Makers #investments

stock market

Market makers are often the topic of discussion on the boards of investment forums. They are often blamed for all sorts of things! The London stock exchange has members who are official market makers and guarantee to trade in certain stocks. (more…)


Politics and #investments #GE2015

The stock market has been a little rocky as investors wonder how the general election result will affect their investments. The minimum wage might go up and put a strain on those companies that have a lot of low paid staff. However, many of those companies will benefit from increased sales. (more…)


Political uncertainty #investments

political

The London stock market still looks shaky this week with political uncertainty making traders and investors nervous.  I’m old enough to remember a few governments and so although cautious, I’m not too worried. Last week, I lost about 2% on my portfolio, but gained this week. (more…)


Rampers and rumours #investments

rampers

I wrote about the news of oil in the Weald basin last week and how that was affecting the share price of the companies involved. The statement about 100 billion barrels of oil, certainly ramped up prices, but they dropped dramatically again this week! Solo Oil hit 0.71, but is back at 0.55 today. (more…)


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